A few weeks ago, I was invited to try out this newly themed night. One look at the menu and I knew I couldn't pass up this opportunity. Since the invite included a guest, I called up a friend, Matt, to share the experience with. It was a good thing I did, and I suggest you do the same thing, as there is just too much bacon goodness for one person to try.
If this review encourages you to go to the Sidecar Restaurant and try their bacon and beer pairing offerings, please let them know you read about them here.
To view the Bacon and Beer appetizer or dessert beer pairings click HERE.
Bacon and Beer Entrees
Tasting tip: Try each part of the meal individually first, batter, waffle, sloppy joe, etc. Then take a sip of beer, make mental notes about the flavors you taste. Then try each part with sip of beer. Then start combining all the parts and sipping beer along the way.
So far this is pairing has been all about building and accentuating individual flavors and now it is time for some contrasting flavors. Old Bar Brown is a medium bodied beer and it finishes dry. This means there is little sweetness in aftertaste, perfect for this pairing. It builds, and builds on flavor commonalities then right before you swallow, the beer (alcohol and carbonation) cleanses everything away and leaves you with just a hint of roasty flavor that will resonate with your next bite of Sloppy Joe.
First of all, this fried chicken was perfectly prepared. "Light" and crispy batter and super moist chicken underneath. The batter also has a special mix of spices that resonate with the dry, rye spiciness in the beer.
The waffle is a treat, as well. The bits bacon scattered throughout give the waffle a bit hidden texture and, of course, flavor. The sage is an excellent counterpoint to all the sweet and savory flavors with its slight peppery accent. It is the sage that makes this beer pairing so perfect. Again, the dry, rye spiciness in the beer resonates with the sage in the waffle.
And then comes one of my favorite parts of any beer pairing. That moment when you take a sip of beer and the carbonation lifts up all the flavors mixes 'em up. If you aren't paying attention you may just miss it which would be a shame. The carbonation causes a brief explosion of flavor and aroma before the beer's malty and/or hoppy flavors take over.
Now, take a bite that has all of the components (batter, chicken, waffle, syrup)and savor the flavors as they mix and resonate with each other. Swallow. Now take a drink of County Line Rye. Note the momentary explosion of flavor as all of the components are lifted up off the palate and mixed together, again.
Something to consider:
The picture doesn't do this entree any justice. It is delicious and HUGE! That is half of a chicken stacked on that waffle. This is definitely an entree that you can share or take home and eat for lunch the next day.
Disclaimer: This was a delicious comped meal, but I wouldn't be writing this glowing recap if it hadn't been.